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Michael Gove is the next housing secretary, No.10 confirms

Former Cabinet Secretary and key Brexiteer is put in charge of ensuring government delivers on building 300,000 homes a year.

Nigel Lewis

Michael Gove is the new Housing Minister, it has been confirmed following rumours on social media over the past hour.

Gove, who has held offices of state in past Tory governments but until now had an almost ceremonial role as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in the Johnson administration, albeit with a cabinet post, will have one of the trickiest roles in government.

Like his predecessor Robert Jenrick, he must try – vainly some might argue – to delivery on the government’s promise to build 300,000 new homes a year, as well as handle the backwash from the ongoing leasehold and Grenfell Tower scandals.

Political agenda

Link to Mentoring featurePropertymark CEO Nathan Emerson (pictured), comments: “We welcome today’s appointment of Michael Gove as the new Secretary of State for Housing. “Over the past 18 months housing has been high on the political agenda, with the long term Covid-19 inflicted stamp duty holiday and evictions ban due to close at the end of the month.

“We look forward to meeting the new Secretary of State and his team over the coming months and hope the Department’s position and policy focus stays on track.”

Gove has spoken about housing in the past, although he most famous intervention political was to side with residents in his constituents seeking to stop a 50-home developments in the village of Bagshot.

A hint of his likely appointment to the housing job came in July, when his name was put to a list of cabinet members supporting the introduction of the Building Safety Bill.  In 2018 he was interviewed by the Knight Frank blog, revealing his plans for the rural landscape and its property market.

Ben Beadle TDS Northern IrelandBen Beadle, Chief Executive of the National Residential Landlords Association (pictured) said: “We welcome Michael Gove to his new position and look forward to working with him to ensure the rental market works for responsible landlords and tenants alike.

Key to this will be addressing the supply crisis in the sector by developing pro-growth policies that recognise the vital contribution it makes to housing millions of people across the country.”

September 15, 2021

4 comments

  1. Good to see that Mr Gove appears to have the same attitude, as his predecessor, to the commercial interests of developers as we learn in the Times today he received 100k three weeks ago from a British-German property developer, I am reassured that a spokesman from the housing ministry said that all donations to Mr Gove the new Housing secretary had been declared. You could not make this up – as one of the reasons Mr Jenrick tumbled from office it could be argued was amongst other things, his close proximity to a certain building project in East London, which mired his tenure.

  2. Good points, only one teensy weensy problem.

    House construction in the UK is in the hands of an Oligopoly of house builders, Barratt, Persimmon, Wimpy etc.

    They are making net profits of 30% per annum in their pubished accounts, with the current arthritic system.

    Why go faster?

    Why build smaller homes that are not as profitable?

    Mr Gove has stepped into a job that has a life expectancy of 8 months over the last 26 years regardless of the political stripe of the government.

    This may be the device that Boris is looking for to take revenge on his former leadership rival and send him to the back benches like several of his predecessors.

    Sadly, nothing will change and Boris’s promise will be just that.

    A bit of political “puff” to sooth the voters and forgotten about at the next election.

    Apologies for being so synical.

  3. The government’s promise to build 300,000 new homes a year? The State does not build homes, it just gets in the way.

    We urgently need the government to do less to help the housing crisis. Nearly everything it does only distorts the market and makes things worse.

    British developers, landlords, agents can create the housing that other Britons need if the government gets off their backs and removes red tape. Last summer’s unusually sensible announcement of the liberalisation of our bureaucratic planning controls shows the way to go.

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